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Alabama Florida Betting - Alabama And Florida Lock Horns In SEC Showdown

Posted by Blake Frazier on 9/28/2011 6:36:07 PM

The parade of tough games in the Southeastern Conference is part of what makes this corner of the college football world so special. Saturday night, Alabama and Florida take center stage.

Alabama Crimson Tide @ Florida Gators - Saturday, October 1

Sports betting line: Alabama -3.5

Why Alabama Will Win

The truth that MLB baseball betting experts know so well – and which they’ll be referring to when the baseball playoffs begin this upcoming weekend – is that good pitching stops good hitting. That’s another way of saying that good defense stops good offense. Well, in the case of this matchup between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Florida Gators, it’s going to be a case of good defense stopping a less-than-good offense.

Don’t get sucked into the hype in this game. Florida started as a six-and-a-half-point underdog to Alabama, but the money has steadily flowed to the Gators in the first few days of betting. This is a mistake. Yes, Alabama’s not going to win this game by 24 points, but the Crimson Tide aren’t likely to be taken to the wire, either. Florida’s offense isn’t lethal enough to make Alabama’s defense sweat. Let’s recall how impotent Florida’s offense was against the whole of the SEC last year. Let’s also realize that Florida’s offense did not take advantage of a relatively weak Alabama defense, a unit that – weakened by attrition after winning the 2009 national championship – did not have much of a secondary. Alabama’s back line of defense got torched by South Carolina and Auburn in 2010, but Florida couldn’t make a dent in the Tide’s secondary, losing 31-6 in a laugher. Yes, this game’s in Gainesville, Florida, and not Tuscaloosa, Alabama, but the Gators haven’t yet shown that they can compete with Bama’s retooled 2011 defense, which is hammering opponents left and right. The Tide have regained full strength on defense and have not allowed more than 14 points to any opponent this season. Dre Kirkpatrick, Dont’a Hightower, and DeQuan Menzie are just three of the performers on a defense that is likely to provide the NFL with a stockpile of talent. Florida crushed Kentucky last week, but that’s no preparation for Alabama. Kentucky is the worst team in the SEC right now; Alabama is at the top of the league, alongside LSU.

Why Florida Will Win

When you contemplate your sports bet on this game, there is one reason to pick Florida: A.J. McCarron. The Alabama quarterback has not yet been tested in 2011. He has watched the other two parts of his football team take care of business for him. McCarron didn’t need to lift a finger when Bama blasted Penn State 27-3 in the first three and a half quarters of a Sept. 10 road game (Penn State scored a very late cosmetic touchdown to make the final score 27-11). McCarron didn’t need to do much when Bama ripped Arkansas last weekend. The Tide scored two special-teams touchdown and also snagged a pick-six. If Alabama’s offense has to do something big in the fourth quarter, that’s where Florida could pounce. The Gators are rugged on defense and can shut down Alabama. If McCarron makes big mistakes, Florida can pull the upset.

Who Will Win

McCarron will not be impressive, but he won’t make the big mistake, and that will be enough for Alabama. The Tide can run the ball between the tackles with Trent Richardson. Florida quarterback John Brantley will throw a few crippling interceptions, and that will be the ballgame. Bama will win by 17.

College Football Betting Pick: Alabama

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